Don’t be surprised If You won’t get hired When you say you can do literally “Anything”
– By: marc cenedella –
“Oh, I’m looking for anything,” you might tell your well-meaning friends who ask.
It’s a problem.
Because in today’s economy, no employer at the professional level is looking for a “Manager, Anything”, or a “Deputy Assistant of Whatever Needs to Be Done.” They’re looking for a talented professional who can help a team solve specific problems.
When you’re thinking about moving jobs, it helps to have a short conversational statement of who you are and what you’re qualified to do. It’s important that you be able to explain it in 30 seconds or so. That way, it makes it easier to share it with a former co-worker, a new connection, or even just a Tinder date that turned into a friend (without benefits — this isn’t that kind of post…)
It’s called an “elevator pitch” — a concise statement of your abilities and goals that can be shared in the time it takes an elevator to go to the top floor.
Vague and general aren’t helpful…
“I’m a saleswoman”, or…
“I’m in logistics”, or…
“I’m a finance guy”, don’t work because they don’t explain what you need and how somebody can help.
No, in the 21st century you need to be way more specific and provide some relevant details. Describe what you’ve done, what you like about it, and what you’re looking to do… in a half-minute.
Seriously, it’s actually pretty easy.
So it’s not “I’m a saleswoman” but rather…
“I’m a sales professional looking to step up from cold-calling to more relationship-driven sales. I love selling SaaS software and explaining technology to clients who might not “get it” yet. And I’d like to join a larger, more established organization where I can get training and learn from experienced co-workers.”
It’s not “I’m in logistics” but rather…
“I’m a logistics specialist who’s worked on a lot of projects to optimize delivery routes and timing with our suppliers. I enjoy it because it always feels like I’m solving a new puzzle. And I’d like to move up in my career with a manufacturer that is looking for people to help bring down the cost of production year after year.”
And it’s not “I’m a finance guy” but rather…
“I’m a finance guy who enjoys working in financial planning & analysis, rationalizing team budgets to make sure that different groups are doing the best they can to help the company meet its goals. I like it because you can really see the payoff when your co-workers are able to do more with less. And I’m looking to move into a more start-up environment, actually, because I like to help manage growth and put new procedures in place.”
None of these sound too weird, and you ought to be able to find a paragraph that explains you, that’s natural, and that’s effective, by following these three simple steps.
- Say what you’ve done.
- Say what you like about it.
- Say what you’d therefore like to do next.
It helps a lot if your pitch is specific for your field, and you keep it pretty short and tight when describing your ambitions, so that your former co-workers, your future boss, or an HR recruiter can understand how and where you’ll add value and improve the business.
So please avoid the easy temptation to say that you’re looking for anything, and be specific in your job search. It’s the best way to let people know how to help you, and to let companies know how you’ll help them.